56th Case for Buffalo Homicide Squad This Year
December 29, 2005
The caseload grew again Wednesday night for Buffalo homicide detectives. It comes near the close of a year that saw the return of the homicide squad. News 4's Jodi Hovenden reports from Buffalo police headquarters.
Buffalo homicide detectives are searching for the gunman who shot and killed 24-year-old Jason Lindsay early Thursday morning.
It happened around 1:30 Thursday morning in the Langfield projects as Lindsay was reportedly on his way to see his girlfriend.
Buffalo homicide squad Lieutenant Kenneth Bienko said, "Nobody saw anything. A few people heard the shots. One person looked outside, saw him laying there, and called for an ambulance."
It's the 56th homicide in the city this year, and while detectives do not have any suspects in this case, they have solved about 40 percent of the homicides committed this year since the homicide squad was reinstated in late January.
Investigative Services Chief Anthony Barba said, "The national rate is usually in the fifties, so it's a little disappointing for us that we didn't get more [cases] cleared, but I will say that these homicides are being investigated. We believe we know who did them, and it's only a matter of time."
Detectives have also solved five cold homicide cases in the past 12 months.
Barba said, "We are able to dedicate a lot of time to them, where, when they were doing other crimes -- your burglaries, your robberies, your bank alarms, and so forth -- they couldn't dedicate that time."
But even with a homicide squad, detectives say one of their biggest frustrations is getting citizens to come forward with information about crimes, and in some cases, there is pressure not to talk to police.
Barba said, "They're walking around, while we're trying to... while we're over a homicide scene, people are walking around with these shirts." [see photos at left]
These T-shirts, they say, are sold in neighborhoods where many of the crimes take place.
Barba said, "With this in a community, and people not willing to talk to us and help us, it makes it almost impossible to solve some of these crimes."